FSAfarm+ Online Tool Let’s Farmers Get Data at Home vs. Local FSA Office
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) has launched a new tool that helps farmers, producers and landowners access their FSA farm information from the comfort of their own homes or farm offices. With the launch of FSAFarm+, any farmer can now search, view, and print any FSA farm data without having to visit the local county FSA office. This isn’t to say that you shouldn’t stop visiting your local office, but rather gives you a way to look at crop acreage maps and more without having to make a trip to town.
The program, known as FSAfarm+, provides you with secure access to view your personal FSA data, such as base and yields, Conservation Reserve Program data, other conservation program acreage, Highly Erodible Land Conservation and Wetland Conservation status information, field boundaries, farm imagery, name and address details, contact information and membership interest and shares in the operation. This data will be available in real time, at no cost to the producer and allow operators and owners to export and print farm records, including maps. Producers also can electronically share their data with a crop insurance agent from their own personal computer.
Farm operators and owners first will need “Level 2 eAuthentication” to access the webportal. This level of security ensures that personal information is protected for each user. Level 2 access can be obtained by going to www.eauth.usda.gov, completing the required information and then visiting your local FSA office to finalize access.
For more information on FSAfarm+, the customer self-service portal, contact your local FSA office. To find your local FSA county office, click http://offices.usda.gov.
Just a few of the features of FSAfarm+ that are appealing to be able to perform from the comfort of your own office, especially in the middle of a snow storm!
- Farmland and cropland information
- ACR/PLC bases and yield information
- CRP and other conservation program acreage
- HELC and WC status information
- field boundaries (common land unit)
- farm imagery
- name and address details
- membership interest and share information
- contact information.
- FSAfarm+ also allows farmers, landowners and producers to search for and print their farm and tract maps. This is a great tool for anyone considering selling a farm in Indiana as well.
For more information contact your local Indiana county FSA office
Farm Safety During the 2016 Harvest
As we approach the 2016 corn and soybean harvest here in Benton County, it’s a great time for everyone driving the county roads to take a moment and reflect on farm safety. More farm accidents occur during the fall than any other time of the year and it’s everyone’s responsibility for safety.
Slow Moving Vehicles
One big danger during harvest are the slow moving vehicle on county roads. As farmers move equipment from field to field or haul grain on highways and rural roads, be on the lookout for flashing lights and bright slow moving vehicle signs. As a public service announcement, pay extra attention when driving on rural roads during harvest season, especially before and after work or school. Farm vehicles are large and move much slower than cars, the best advice is to slow down, pay attention and stay off cell phones while driving.
Here are a few tips for our farming friends & the general public to help make harvest is a safe one:
- Sunsets & sunrises can be blinding during the morning or evening commute in the fall. Please, pay attention and slow down at road crossings & intersections.
- Farmers, please make sure that Slow Moving Vehicle (SMV) signs are clearly visible on all off-road vehicles. Make sure SMV signs are in good condition and properly mounted.
- Use proper vehicle lighting & make sure your headlights and brake lights are functioning.
- Tractors & combines should use flashers at all times while on public roads. The American Society of Agricultural Engineers (ASAE) recommends two flashing amber lights, mounted at least 42 inches high, in both the front and rear.
- Turn on your headlights 30 minutes before sunset, until 30 minutes after sunrise. Also use headlights whenever insufficient light or unfavorable weather conditions exist. If your vehicle has automatic headlamps, check to make sure the switch is in the correct position.
- When trailering or pulling wagons, inspect hitches to ensure they are sturdy and properly mounted before towing or heading down the road. If equipped, use the safety chains.
- Be patient & share the road.
Benton County Sheriff Don Munson adds, “We need to remember that our local farmers are out there trying to do their job as safely as possible. Farm equipment is oversized and that means we need to exercise over-caution. Pay attention to your surroundings and be please patient.”
The last four (4) months of the year have several important dates that all producers and Indiana farmers may want to put in their calendars. Whether you have non-insured crops and are looking for disaster assistance or simply plan to visit your local office… here are the big dates & deadlines.
September 1: Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) application closing date for value loss crops for the following year (flowers for fresh cut, onion sets, turfgrass sod, Christmas trees, aquaculture, ginseng, mushrooms, etc.)
September 5: Offices closed in observance of Labor Day
September 15: Reporting date for cucumbers (planted 6/1-8/15 in Knox County)
September 30: Reporting date for value loss and controlled environment crop (for the coming program year)
September 30: NAP application closing date for garlic, wheat, barley, rye and mint for the following year’s crop
October 10: Offices closed in observance of Columbus Day
November 1: Final application for payment for 2016 ELAP for losses occurring 10/1/2015 to 9/30/2016
November 4: Final date to submit a prevented planting claim for 2016 fall wheat with 10/20 final plant date
November 11: Offices closed in observance of Veteran’s Day
November 15: Reporting date for perennial grazing and forage crops (alfalfa, grass, mixed forages, clover, etc.)
November 15: Final date to submit a prevented planting claim for 2016 fall wheat with 10/31 final plant date
November 15: NAP application closing date for perennial grazing and forage crops (alfalfa, grass, mixed forages, clover, etc.)
November 20: NAP application closing date for apples, apricots, aronia (chokeberry), asparagus, blueberries, caneberries, cherries, grapes, hops, nectarines, peaches, pears, plums, strawberries
November 24: Offices closed in observance of Thanksgiving Day
December 1: NAP application closing date for honey for the following year
December 15: Reporting date for 2016 fall mint, fall-seeded small grains
December 16: Deadline Extended: MPP-Dairy 2017 registration and election ends
December 26: Offices closed in observance of Christmas Day
Free Conservation Discussion & Field Tour for Women Farmland Owners in Tippecanoe county & Surrounding Indiana County area
July 27th, 2016 and open discussion and field tour is available to any women farm and land owners at the Lilly Nature Center, located at 1620 Lindberg Road, West Lafayette, Indiana, 47906.
“We estimate that women now own or co-own between one-fourth and one-half of the farmland in the Midwest and they are very interested in farming practices that benefit the health of their land,” said Jennifer Filipiak, associate Midwest director for the American Farmland Trust. “Our goal is to connect these women with each other and with the resource professionals who can help them with their farmland management goals.”
Women Caring for the LandSM meetings bring together landowners in an informal learning format for a women-only morning discussion followed by a more in-depth look at the characteristics of healthy soil and farming practices that promote it. Female conservation professionals are on hand to answer questions and share resources. A participant from last year’s learning circle commented that is it “wonderful to hear experts who were women sharing their information and passion.”
Following lunch, area conservationists will lead a bus tour to view conservation practices on the ground. Discussion will focus on soil health and cover crops, but will also include water quality, wildlife management and government cost-share programs. The Women Caring for the LandSM format was developed by the Women Food and Agriculture Network (WFAN) in Iowa. “We continually hear from women how grateful they are for a women-only learning environment,” commented Bridget Holcomb, executive director of the WFAN, “and they tell us that they are able to discuss issues that they wouldn’t feel comfortable bringing up in any other setting.”
On July 27, coffee and registration will begin at 8:30 a.m. and the meeting will start at 9. Lunch is provided, and the program will end with refreshments at 3 p.m.
RSVP by 5:00 p.m. Friday, July 22 to Chris Remley, Tippecanoe County Soil & Water Conservation District at (765) 474-9992, extension 3 or firstname.lastname@example.org. If you need accommodation please notify us when you RSVP. And feel free to bring a female friend or family member, just let us know when you RSVP!
This session of Women Caring for the LandSM is sponsored by the Tippecanoe County Soil and Water Conservation District in collaboration with Women4theLand and the Women, Food and Agriculture Network. Staff from the SWCD, USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, and other conservationists will be on hand to answer your questions.
More information can be found at the Women Caring for the Land website here: http://www.wfan.org/our-
Article Provided by Tippecanoe County FSA Office & the USDA
Tippecanoe County FSA Office
1812 Troxel DR, STE C2
Lafayette, IN 47909
County Executive Director:
Farm Loan Manager:
The Commodity & Futures Market Veteran Weighs in on Pricing the 2015 Crop
He grew up just south of Lafayette, Indiana and attended Darlington High School – today he’s known around the globe by farmers and investors for helping to take as much risk out of farming and marketing as possible. Since 1980, Richard Brock and his team of commodity experts have been producing the Brock Report, a 20 page weekly newsletter and daily market commentary, 3 times per day, on the state of corn, soybeans, livestock and more. Today, the Brock Report manages grain sales on approx. 700,000 acres in 14 states and strives to educate people on more than just the price per bushel, but market dynamics, historical trends and risk management.
I visited with Richard Brock’s team during a seminar in Lafayette, Indiana and had the opportunity to speak privately with Richard Brock himself to get his opinion on the current state of the corn and soybeans markets, pricing and go-forward plans.
The Markets Today
“We are in a supply driven weather market. Once you identify what kind of market you’re in, you can identify how those markets are going to behave.” – Richard Brock, The Brock Report June 2015
Explain the type of market we are seeing in June 2015 and your outlook?
According to Brock, “Supply driven weather markets are very short and they cause the market to spike. Markets like this typically don’t last long and we move through them very quickly, immediately followed by a market drop. All supply driven weather markets react in the same patterns and the odds are very high that we will have a top in this market before the middle of July. It wouldn’t surprise me to the top of this market trend before the 4th of July.
We’re getting to price levels now with both corn and soybeans that are going to be significantly above what we think the market will average for the year. Our approach is to look for a place to start scale-in selling because markets like this can, in one day, (for soybean prices) have a 30-40 cent trading range and corn with a 20 cent trading range. You need to have orders sitting there on a scale-out sale or you’re not going to realize the price benefits of this weather pattern.”
How does a weather driven market affect supply?
“Unless it keeps raining for the next 2 months, the crop that is drowned out in low areas is generally offset by crops sitting in the higher ground. Traditionally speaking you don’t get a huge cut in yields in a weather rally. In fact this is perhaps only the second weather rally I have seen in 35 years that is caused by too much rain during this time of the year. All said, it’s a very unusual situation to have this kind of weather market for corn and beans here in June 2015.
Supply driven weather markets perform similar to a drought weather market except that they typically turn and go much lower. Drought markets tend to hurt yields more than rain markets. The old adage “rain makes grain” generally rings true.”
“This is a market that will present some excellent opportunities for farmers to sell into, but it’s always about timing and preparation.”
What is your take on pricing the 2015 crop?
“Our goal and objective is that sometime here before mid-July we lock in a good percentage of this years crop. If December corn futures get above $4.15 to $4.20, we’ll look at this as an opportunity to, in some cases, get as much as 70% of this new crop sold. We believe those prices are far above what the market will average. In the case of soybeans, we are looking for the market to get above $10.30 and if it does, we’ll go to nearly 70% sold for the new crop.”
“This is a rally that we will be aggressive on.” – Richard Brock, The Brock Report
Looking historically, we’re not going into a bull market like we did in 2012 and we have a very large carryover of supply. Many estimates say that today’s carryover of corn is about 1.8 billion bushels, whereas back in 2012 there were approximately 800 million bushels of carryover.
What are your thoughts on old crop sitting in storage?
“Having old crop is very similar to baseball in that, you’re in the 8th inning, down 10 to 0, and there are two outs. It’s time to start thinking about tomorrow’s baseball game, take this rally, move that old crop and start thinking about next year.”
What factors are playing a role to help the American farmer?
“First off, the opportunities to market crops at much higher price levels have been there for a long time. The market has given farmers a lot of opportunities, some have chosen to take advantage of that and some have not. Look for price rallies like the one we are in today and make the most of it by doing a lot of forward selling. Think about the technology available to increase yields, when prices are down and you need to increase revenues, there are ways to better manage your operation to get the most out of your soils. Whether it’s new planter technology with multi-hybrid & variable rate potential, or getting the most out of nitrogen and chemicals, it’s amazing what can be done today.”
There are several schools of thought on the outcome of a strong market vs. a low market, but there are plenty of good things that can come out of low prices. When markets are down, it forces people to rethink their bottom line while, improve their management skills, and puts more emphasis on every marketing decision. Whether you agree with that or not, it’s clear that pricing today’s crop means paying more careful attention to the spikes and drops. When corn was $7.50, selling at $6.00 still meant a lot of great profits, but when a break-even hovers around $4.00, missing out on 50 cents is not be taken lightly. The sentiment among the farmers, producers, and agribusiness professionals I speak with daily is that you’ve got to take the time to learn to be a solid grain marketer. Going forward what will you do differently?
I welcome your comments, feedback and suggestions on this topic and all things Ag related
– shoot me an email at johnny (at) prairiefarmland.com
Want to learn more about The Brock Report? visit them online at www.brockreport.com
As a full service commodity marketing agency, the Brock Report offers their customers:
- Daily Market Commentary via the web or smartphone app
- The Brock Report Newsletter – For over 30 years, a leading source of market intelligence and insights
- MarketEdge – highlights changes in USDA estimates, carryover, acreage & production that impacts commodity markets
- MarketWeatherEdge – weather risk analysis and commodity market intelligence
About the Author
The Back Forty is a syndicated column written by Published Author & Purdue Graduate Johnny Klemme. His reporting, interviews with Ag Experts and more can be found at www.Prairiefarmland.com/blog
The USDA recently announced an updated and expanded Farm Storage and Facility Loan program, helping farmers invest into grain bin storage and upgrade corn & soybean storage grain legs with low-interest loans for financing these capital improvements.
In addition to offer low interest rates on grain bin construction loans, the USDA has lessened the security requirements for loans up to $100,000.
No longer are farmers required to put a lien on farm real estate or farmland, only a promissory note/security agreement is required for these low interest loans up to $50K.
As with other USDA programs, the loans for the construction of grain bin storage must fall into eligible commodity categories and corn and soybean storage in Indiana meet this requirement
It is always advised that you consult you local FSA Agent and Indiana county office about this loan program and what interest rates you may qualify for to build grain bins and grain storage on your farm.
For more information visit www.fsa.usda.gov
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